POLICE are confident of adeptly handling demonstrations that will be taking place over the next three days, with a big one to be held on Sunday November 8, by following strategies they have used in the past, Thai Rath newspaper reported this evening (Nov. 6).
Deputy Metropolitan Police Chief Pol. Maj. Gen Piya Tawichai said he is certain police will be able to take care of the situation by dividing areas of control.
Regarding progress in prosecuting the protesters, Pol. Maj. Gen Piya said so far legal action had been taken in many cases with there being four to five key ones, among them is the assault of a Ramkhamhaeng University student in which one person had been prosecuted with nine others involved in the incident to be summoned.
Another important case is the throwing of a giant firecracker near Tha Phra station which is still being investigated with charges to be for creating noise that panicked the people.
Yet another case stems from the filing of a complaint by Mr. Suwit Thongprasert, formerly an ultra-royalist activist monk under the name Buddha Issara, for prosecution of the suspects under Section 116 of the Criminal Code and three of them have surrendered to Phaya Thai police station.
Where the big demonstration at Pathumwan intersection is concerned, charges have been filed against 17 suspects, with arrest warrants issued for five of them and all have surrendered. Seven are still being investigated.
Pol. Maj. Gen Piya also reminded the demonstrators that assembly within 150-metre radius of royal compounds is strictly forbidden.
Regarding the three protest leaders, Mr. Parit Chivarak ,or Penguin, Ms. Panusaya Sitthichirawattanakul, or Rung, and Mr. Panupong Chadnok, or Mike, who have been discharged from hospital and are convalescing at home, the senior police officer said they would have to be detained again if there are any cases that have not yet been investigated but in fact so far investigation of all of them have been completed.
Top: A press briefing at Metropolitan Police Bureau today with Pol. Maj. Gen Piya at right and Pol. Col. Krisana Pattanacharoen, deputy spokesman of the Royal Thai Police, standing beside him. Photo: Thai Rath